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Horizon by Jenn Reese ARC {4 Stars}

Horizon by Jenn Reese is the conclusion to the Above World trilogy, a mix of sci-fi and fantasy middle grade that has continued to incorporate more and more cool ideas and messages throughout! If you don’t want to be spoiled, check out my review of Above World instead ;-). If you’ve enjoyed this series so far, then you have to read the final book since it continues to deliver all the fun and magic that Above World and Mirage started. We even get chapters from a few new points of view, yey!

Note: I received Horizon from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Some things may have changed in the final version.

Horizon by Jenn Reese ARC {4 Stars}

Horizon by Jenn Reese (Above World #3)
Published by Candlewick Press on April 8th, 2014
Genres: Fantasy, MG, Sci-fi
Page Length: 400 pages
How I got my copy: Publisher
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Aluna and Hoku, Kampii from the City of Shifting Tides, and their friends, Equian Dash and winged Aviar Calli, are determined to stop a war. The maniacal ex-scientist Karl Strand is planning to conquer the world with his enormous army of tech-enhanced soldiers . . . unless the four friends can get to Strand first. Aluna’s plan is dangerous: pose as Upgraders and infiltrate the army. But the enemy isn’t what they expected and the strategy begins to crumble. When the friends are torn apart by conflicting allegiances, their slim chance of avoiding war seems to disappear completely. For Aluna and Hoku, what began as a quest to save their own people has become a mission to save the world. But do Aluna and her friends have any hope of defeating Strand if they can’t take him on together?

4 Stars

Strengths:

  • Horizon really challenges all of our four main characters and they rise to those challenges in different ways. There is just so much character development is so many different directions and I was so happy that Aluna, Hoku, Cali, and Dash really started to grow into the people they were meant to be!
  • There are some great messages both in the previous two books and in Horizon and it made me so happy. This series in general has some great themes about people with disabilities still being cool people, about how stereotypes about a group of people being evil don’t make much sense once you get to know some of those people, and about acceptance of all sorts in general. There is also a point at which Aluna realizes that if other people, her father especially, are disappointed in her, then that’s their problem, not hers. Love this!
  • Horizon delighted me by its casual addition of acceptance of homosexuality in this future world. Aluna’s sister asks if she’s interested in any “boys or girls” and when Dash says “fathers” instead of “parents” no one bats an eye. Awesome!!
  • One of the fun things about this series is the sci-fi spin on all of the typical fantasy creatures, and Horizon introduces a new type of humanoid critter along with giving us a better understanding of some of the ones only touched on previously.
  • Middle-grade romances are so adorable when the kids get to the holding hands and kissing on the cheek stage *giggles furiously*.

Weaknesses:

  •  I get annoyed when there are multiple points of view and they switch at cliffhanger moments. Horizon started doing this a lot towards the end because there are two major fights that happen. These sorts of switches just make me want to skip ahead, finish one battle, and then go back to read the other.
  • A lot of things need to be wrapped up in Horizon and it really started to feel like too much. I could easily have seen Horizon being two books instead of one and it might have worked better.
  • This is a typical problem with middle-grade, but it really became a hinderance to my enjoyment of Horizon: it seemed unrealistic for these kids to have so much respect so easily. There are a lot of adults who treat the main characters like adults, even though they are young teens and in no real way qualified to be bossing anyone around.

Summary:

Horizon by Jenn Reese was a great ending for the Above World trilogy and I really wish that it wasn’t over! The great mix of sci-fi and fantasy elements is just so much fun in Horizon. Add to that the really heartwarming messages woven into the story and I want to pass out copies of the Above World trilogy to every preteen I meet. If you enjoy middle-grade that is a bit on the older side of the age range or are looking for a really fun sci-fi/fantasy trilogy for a preteen or young teen, definitely check these books out!

Anya from On Starships and Dragonwings

Have you read this one? What did you think? Are you excited for it if you haven’t gotten to it yet?
– Anya

 

 Horizon by Jenn Reese

© 2014 – 2016, Anya. All rights reserved.

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